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Comment author: gjm 08 December 2014 09:38:11AM 18 points [-]

American historical accounts of the Revolutionary War usually don't explore whether the revolutionists had reasonable grievances

For what it's worth, I've been in the UK since about age four and everything I learned about the American Revolution took the view that the Americans were basically in the right. I don't know how typical this is, but if it is then one explanation (not the only one but maybe the most plausible) is that actually that's the conclusion most reasonable people would come to when looking at the available evidence, and the most plausible explanation of that is that actually the Americans were (according to typical present-day values) in the right.

crimethink

I don't think this sort of overheated language is helpful. No one is going to put you in prison (or even fine you, or even mock you gently) for thinking that current views of the Enlightenment may be misleadingly positive.

These excessively emotional responses resemble how [...]

Emotional responses are also what one would expect if a thing has (really, truly) been established only with difficulty and much opposition and turned out to be extremely beneficial, and if the person making the response is worried that it's being attacked again.

It is usually best to determine that something is wrong before undertaking to explain the mental pathologies that produce it. (The idea described at the other end of that link is about doing this to beliefs, but I think one can say much the same about attitudes.)

Did our ancestors [...] invent the Enlightenment [...] to manage some kind of terror

This seems like one hell of a leap. There are things other than fear of death that lead people to respond emotionally to things. I already mentioned one above, but there are plenty of unflattering ones if NRx has already made it impossible for you to take seriously the possibility that admirers of "Enlightenment values" might be sincere and sane: for instance, maybe people like David Brin have so much of their personal identity invested in such values that criticism of them feels itself like a personal threat. Or maybe they don't really believe in the Enlightenment any more than you do, but they recognize (as you do) the extent to which present-day Western society is built on it, and fear the consequences if it's overthrown.

Comment author: MichaelAnissimov 08 December 2014 09:45:44PM 1 point [-]

It's crimethink in the sense that people automatically downvote anything critical of the Enlightenment.

Comment author: MichaelAnissimov 03 December 2014 11:48:08AM 5 points [-]

I took the survey.

Comment author: skeptical_lurker 20 November 2014 09:08:44PM 2 points [-]

1) I would agree that its probably best to keep NRx and LW separate. Still, this leaves the question of what is the marginal utility of advocating traditional family values?

2) I see, this does make your NRx position more understandable. I too have moved my estimates somewhat backwards.

Comment author: MichaelAnissimov 20 November 2014 09:14:13PM 5 points [-]

1) Way too many to list here.

2) I still consider a near-future Singularity possible but not likely.

Comment author: skeptical_lurker 20 November 2014 08:35:00PM 5 points [-]

If I understand you correctly, transsexuals are not the problem, lack of family values and low testosterone are the problem, and transexuals are one symptom.

Assuming, for sake of argument, that this is true:

1) A lot of people are pro traditional family values. What do you think the marginal utility of one more advocate is? Or is advocating it amoung certain groups (e.g. LW) more important because we need intelligent people to keep breeding?

2) You say "These communities are slowly being replaced by others" - has your estimate for when the singularity occurs moved far back in time? Concerns about family values seem of little importance if non-biological intelligence is likly to turn up soon.

Comment author: MichaelAnissimov 20 November 2014 08:54:29PM 8 points [-]

In reference to your first comment, basically yes.

1) The only reason I joined this thread in the first place is because someone attacked me, I don't particularly advocate neoreaction among LW groups, because I understand the community is hyper-liberalized to the point of absurdity.

2) Yes, my estimates of when the Singularity will occur moved from 2030-2040 to 2070-2080 over the last five years. This change is partially what has caused the neoreaction thing. I think there is a real risk that Western civilization will fall apart before we get there.

Comment author: Jiro 20 November 2014 07:31:36PM 0 points [-]

Reading that quote, what you said is stronger than that. You said "if communities are going to reap the benefits of strong families". Regardless of how this can be literally parsed, what it connotes is that you think that strong families are beneficial and that transsexuals, by preventing such benefits, are harmful and worthy of condemnation. Furthermore, your quote is full of loaded language which implies that you personally view transsexuals negatively.

Comment author: MichaelAnissimov 20 November 2014 08:00:28PM 5 points [-]

I personally think that many of them are confused. Given that it's a liberal society, I respect people's decisions to do what they want. Yes, strong families are beneficial. Various alternative lifestyles get in the way of that. Eventually societies need to choose between maximizing personal freedom and having strong families. This is a tradeoff that most liberals have yet to really consider seriously.

Comment author: [deleted] 20 November 2014 08:15:44AM *  0 points [-]

Something like 95% of LWers self-classify as social liberals.

Regrettable! I'd hope more would have the good sense to be Communists ;-).

Why would such a phenomenally non-socially-conservative group fixate on neoreaction unless it had some surface plausibility?

Because people are often attracted to things which offend them, like Republican Senators and homosexual prostitution ;-). This is pretty obvious if you model LWers as human beings rather than Bayesian utility maximizers.

That neoreaction uses bits of LW argot is probably more relevant, but it's hard for me to imagine it being the whole explanation. Would a serious creationist last long here just because they larded their comments with our jargon?

That depends. Was he once a spokesman for the Singularity Institute?

Comment author: MichaelAnissimov 20 November 2014 07:09:21PM 4 points [-]

That depends. Was he once a spokesman for the Singularity Institute?

I was media director and also came up for the idea for Singularity Summit, yes.

Comment author: polymathwannabe 20 November 2014 02:30:28PM 4 points [-]

You completely lost me there. What does Tumblr have to do with anything?

Comment author: MichaelAnissimov 20 November 2014 06:55:04PM 1 point [-]

It promotes gender dysphoria by introducing it where it didn't previously exist.

Comment author: KaceyNow 20 November 2014 06:35:05PM 9 points [-]

I don't know which communities you're talking about, but anecdotally I have to say I've found trans bars and support groups to have a much broader range in race, class, and origin than any other places I typically go.

Also, low testosterone you describe in that paragraph is not implicated as a cause of transgender behavior, with people generally being in the typical range for their birth sex before transition, which includes outliers with very high testosterone levels. Giving people additional testosterone has been tried and not been found to "cure" transgender behavior.

Relying on made-up facts for an entire paragraph of your purpose statement is not very encouraging.

Comment author: MichaelAnissimov 20 November 2014 06:52:05PM 4 points [-]

Citation on the testosterone business?

Comment author: RichardKennaway 20 November 2014 02:26:57PM 1 point [-]

The goal is not to simply revive a past arrangement but to apply certain traditional principles and spirit to a newer expression of organic principles that is suited to its context.

...

In any case, "pre-Enlightenment" does not refer to any specific structure (like kangaroos), but a wide variety of arrangements. Therefore, I see it as more similar to "non-elephant" than "kangaroo".

The first quote makes it clear that you do mean something specific by "pre-Enlightenment". Not as specific as, say, "ancien régime France", but nevertheless defined as the positive possession of "certain traditional principles".

Calling any system based on principles aside from Enlightenment ones "pre-Enlightenment"

I am doing the opposite of that, as indeed your first paragraph interpreted me as doing. It appeared to me that you were using "pre-Enlightenment" and "non-Enlightenment" interchangeably, both referring to whatever is not the Enlightenment. And at the end you do claim that "pre-Enlightenment" is a non-elephant, not a kangaroo. If you like, I can analogize it to the class of marsupials, but it still isn't a non-elephant.

You, and Moldbug, and advancedatheist, and every other neoreactionary are putting forward specific views of how society should be structured, specific views which is not merely "something other than the present arrangements". There may be a range of views in the nrsphere, but their doctrines are characterised by what they want, not by what they hate. They do a lot of the hating, to be sure, but they have a positive base of reasons for that.

For example, monarchy and libertarian anarchy are incompatible with each other, and neither of them are Enlightenment structures (as "Enlightenment" is used by neoreactionaries). Are either or both of them compatible with or implied by neoreactionary principles? My reading of neoreactionaries suggests to me that monarchy is, and libertarian anarchy is not.

Comment author: MichaelAnissimov 20 November 2014 06:16:06PM 1 point [-]

...

Read this.

You, and Moldbug, and advancedatheist, and every other neoreactionary are putting forward specific views of how society should be structured, specific views which is not merely "something other than the present arrangements". There may be a range of views in the nrsphere, but their doctrines are characterised by what they want, not by what they hate. They do a lot of the hating, to be sure, but they have a positive base of reasons for that.

Their doctrines are actually more characterized by what they dislike. As I said, NRx is a criticism first and foremost.

For example, monarchy and libertarian anarchy are incompatible with each other, and neither of them are Enlightenment structures (as "Enlightenment" is used by neoreactionaries). Are either or both of them compatible with or implied by neoreactionary principles? My reading of neoreactionaries suggests to me that monarchy is, and libertarian anarchy is not.

Some of the most prominent neoreactionaries are libertarian anarchists.

Comment author: TheOtherDave 20 November 2014 02:13:16PM 2 points [-]

OK. Thanks for clarifying. (I'm not really interested in discussing what about it may or may not be shocking and why it might be if it is, I just wanted to get your perspective on what seemed from mine to simply be two contradictory statements.)

Comment author: MichaelAnissimov 20 November 2014 02:22:01PM 6 points [-]

To clarify further, I'm not a universalist, so I don't think everyone "should" condemn or approve of any particular individual or group. I said that for groups that care about strong families, they will need to denormalize alternative lifestyles. If groups don't care about strong families, they can do whatever they like. The "strong families" bit is essential to the meaning of the paragraph.

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